Childhood and Society: Civilisation as Deferred Gratification

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Title: Childhood and Society: Civilisation as Deferred Gratification
Authors: Mennell, Stephen
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Date: 2018
Online since: 2019-11-08T12:38:03Z
Abstract: There is nothing very controversial in the idea that learning to defer gratification is a central element in the socialisation of children. It could be called an individual civilising process, or just ‘growing up’. The argument of this paper is that the deferred gratification is also the central element in Norbert Elias’s theory of civilising processes as long-term social changes. If he had spoken more about deferred gratification and used the term ‘civilisation’ a bit less, some of the controversy about and misunderstanding of his theory might have been diminished. In Über den Prozess der Zivilisation he set out to demonstrate that the social standard of the capacity to defer gratifcation had over the generations become more demanding; the small child had further to travel in order to attain the standard required to qualify as adult behaviour and feeling.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Verlag Neue Praxis
Journal: Sozialwissenschaftliche Literatur Rundschau
Volume: 77
Start page: 92
End page: 99
Keywords: Civilising processSocial changeNorbert Elias
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Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Conference Details: Interdisziplinäre Zentrum ‘Kindeheiten–Gesellschaften, University of Wuppertal, Germany, 23 January 2018
Appears in Collections:Sociology Research Collection

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